Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Xyience Tangerine Energy Drink


This is another Xyience flavor I have been dying to try but it is just not available in Canada and I was not able to find it on my trips to the US. Fortunately, the guys at Energy Drink Heaven hooked me up again.

Taste

I wasn't expecting it, but this Xyience looks like an Orangina. I was expecting a semi-clear, light orange color, but this is so much more intense. The drink smells like orange creamsicle but tastes like an orange juice with a powerful sour bite and complimentary tangerine flavors. The creamsicle comes back and lingers around throughout the aftertaste leaving traces of vanilla at the back of your mouth.

This is more sour than expected, but keeps the creamsicle flavors under control and wakes you up.

Energy

There are the standard 176 mg of caffeine and they do their business fast. I was wide awake and focused within 15 minutes. The jitters were minimal and when the caffeine finally kicked in, I was ready to run. The energy is explosive, especially first thing in the morning since you have so much in your body. The kick lasted for 3-4 hours and ended without much drama. I felt just a tad tired, but some water helped perk me up.

Scores:
Cost - $48 for a case of 24 from Energy Drink Heaven
Taste - 8.9/10
Energy - 8.2/10

Overall - 17.1/20...refreshing and potent

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Xyience Melon Mayhem


I have been on the hunt for this one for years. And thanks to my friend at Energy Drink Heaven, I finally got one.

Taste

Xyience's Melon flavor has an interesting hazy, pale yellow, light straw color that almost looks like those white/beige gummy bears you can get. It also smells like a gummy bear...like candy and maybe a little bit like honeydew. The taste is a little different than I imagined because I was expecting more cantaloupe and honeydew, but I got traces of watermelon with an moderate sour bite. At first none of the flavors were easily identifiable and it all tasted like one ball of fruits, but after a couple of sips the flavors started to break out and the aftertaste started to develop a mild cantaloupe note, which got better with each sip. At one point I started to notice a minty singe like Rockstar's Freeze. Things just got better and better as I kept drinking this.

Though this is a zero sugar drink, the sweeteners are not as apparent and strong and are well hidden by the drink's sour side and its minty finish.

Energy

There are 88 mg of caffeine per 8 oz for a total of around 176 mg for the entire can. The effects are noticeable within 15 minutes and start off with the haze lifting from your mind and a surge in focus, followed by a desire to run around. I felt a bit jittery at one point, but thankfully that didn't last as long as a sugar drink.

The kick came in another 20 minutes later and lasted for 3-4 hours. It ended with a mild crash, but nothing I wasn't able to recover from with a glass of water. I bet that if you were to drink water throughout that energy period, it would not even exist.

Scores
Cost - unsure, but check Energy Drink Heaven
Taste - 8/10
Energy - 8.2/10

Overall - 16.2/20...solid energy drink with an interesting watermelon/cantaloupe/honeydew flavor

Monday, August 15, 2016

Bang Star Blast Energy Drink Review


Bang is not sold in stores in Canada, but the good folks at Energy Drink Heaven hooked me up with a can. I also learned that Bang is made by the same guys who make the super potent Redline energy drink/shot hybrid series...so this should be good.

Taste

I didn't know what to expect from a flavor called Star Blast, which is why I decided to try it first.

Star Blast smells like a bag of gummy bears with an intense tropical aroma! The taste is similar and adds a candy-like sweetness layer making this flavor much more like gummy bears. The sweetness is interesting because it almost feels like something you get from real sugar, but there is no sugar here. Of course this doesn't last forever and after a few moments you can taste traces of sweetener, but still. While you are drinking this, it really does taste like real sugar.

The aftertaste is sweet and gets sweeter with each sip. Normally energy drinks add citric acid, or something similar, to give the finish some crispness, but there isn't enough of it here (actually ascorbic acid is used here). The sweetness is nice at first because it feels like you just had some gummy bears, but it becomes too much by the end of the can.

Energy

There are 300 mg of caffeine in this can! I can't remember the last time I had something with 300 mg of caffeine thanks to tightening regulations in Canada and south of the border. A such, the effects are quick and  intense.

I felt this wave of energy and focus rush towards me within 15 minutes of opening the drink. The focus lasted for good 15 minutes before the caffeine got the better of me and made me want to run around. No wonder gym nuts love this drink.

The energy was clean and lasted for almost 5 hours. The end came with a mild crash but some water and tea helped restore my energy levels.

Scores:
Cost - courtesy of Energy Drink Heaven
Taste - 8.5/10
Energy - 10/10

Overall - 18.5/20...a little too sweet for me, but what a rush

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Marley Mellow Mood Peach Raspberry Black Tea Relaxation Drink


Marley Mellow Mood is at it again. Just a few weeks ago Marley Beverage released a slew of relaxation drinks and coffee beverages in 7-11 stores in Canada...and I am positive in the US as well. Like the previous Mellow Moods, these ones are tea based, but just contain different flavors.

Taste

The peach raspberry Mellow Mood has a fantastic peach aroma with just a hint of berries and sweet black tea at the back. The tea is very sweet at the start with a blast of peach, but immediately after comes a moderate tart raspberry hit that takes the sweetness down a notch and takes you to the sweet black tea finish. There is a very interesting candy-like sweet peach peak where the flavors meet which adds a unique twist.

The aftertaste is tart and dry at first but some of the sweetness returns and balances it nicely allowing for a lingering fruity note without any downsides.

Performance

I don't know if the blend is different, but I thought the effects were quicker just not as intense as the first one I had many years ago. It took me around 15 minutes to go through half the can and I was already feeling the effects. My eyelids were getting heavy and I was having a bit of trouble focusing on some words. Definitely felt like taking a break from reading and just chilling on the couch or in bed.

After another 20 minutes I was pretty chill and just ready to sleep. The sleep was good, but because of the 450 mL of liquid I had to consume had me waking up in the middle of the night to use the washroom. I wonder if there could be a Marley Mellow Mood relaxation shot.

Scores:
Cost - $3.19
Taste - 9/10
Performance - 8/10

Overall - 17/20...damn delicious and works well


Monday, August 8, 2016

Guru Energy Water Grapefruit Review


Oh boy, I can't remember the last time I had a Guru. For a while these guys were everywhere and I consider Guru's Juicy Superfruit to be the best tasting energy drink I have ever had. But after a couple of years, these guys started becoming rarer and rarer. This past weekend was the first time in months that I saw some in a store. What made the occasion even more special was that the store also had Guru's new Energy Waters for $2.99!

Taste

The Grapefruit Energy Water has a hazy color with a pale yellow hue that resembles freshly squeezed lemon juice. The aroma is strong with notes of grapefruit, but the taste is much more subtle and diluted. Like with all flavored waters, there isn't much flavor at first, but once the bubbles disappear, you get notes of citrus, erythritol and some earthiness from the added green tea. For me, the erythritol was too strong and left too long of a lingering sweetener note. Wasn't a huge fan of this.

Energy

There are 100 mg of caffeine from the green tea. Despite the lack of sugar, the effects are fairly quick to appear. Within 10 minutes I was starting to wake up and my mind felt more focused without any of the jitters a normal energy drink would induce. Once the caffeine kicked in, I felt just a tad over-energized, but I was able to burn off the excess energy on my walk to work. The effects lasted for just over 2 hours and ended without much drama.

Scores:
Cost - $2.99
Taste - 7.5/10
Energy - 7/10

Overall - 14.5/20...not as great as the Gurus I love, but would appeal to a specific market

Monday, August 1, 2016

Crystal Pepsi Review


Clinton is running for president, Blink-182 is popular again, people are going nuts over Pokemon Go and Crystal Pepsi has returned...daaaamn, it is like the 1990's all over again. If you are like me and don't remember anything about Crystal Pepsi, now is your chance to try it again and unearth some deep forgotten memories.

I found a huge stash of Crystal Pepsi as a Loblaw's downtown Toronto, but from what I have been reading, it should be available country-wide and where Pepsi products are sold.

Crystal Pepsi vs. Regular Pepsi

So what makes Crystal Pepsi so different from the regular Pepsi? As far as I can tell just the lack of caramel color. The lack of this ingredient has a tiny effect on the flavor and makes it a touch less sweet and caramely (if that's not a word, it is now) and that's it! It also looks really cool.

The 591 mL bottle that I tried still had the same 63 mg of caffeine so the only difference is the lack of color. This isn't a caffeine-free drink like some made you believe in the 90's.

Soooo the hype is just about the color...still. Get a bottle and re-live your early days.

Scores:
Cost - $2
Taste - meh....do I even bother? It is just a Pepsi!

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Red Bull Blue Edition Japan


Don't confuse this new Japanese Red Bull with the Blue Edition one that was released a few years ago. This new one is exclusive to Japan but you can get one on eBay for $5 plus shipping. I ended up paying around $14 CDN for everything.

Taste

Dark purple liquid pours out of the can and fills the air around with intense grape aromas. The carbonation aids in distributing bursts of aroma evenly and far away. Up close you can smell the grape skins. This has to be the most intense smelling Red Bull ever.

The flavor is almost the same - very intense concord grape with a ton of blackcurrants that boost up the intensity even more. It is so fresh and rich. Amazing....but this Red Bull is not without its flaws. Near the finish there is a brief moment where you get a hint of something medicinal that is just a touch bitter. However, that is quickly killed by the intensity of the flavor.

Still, best Red Bull I have tasted.

Energy

Not much new on the energy front. There are 80 mg of caffeine and the effects are the same as any other Red Bull so I will copy some text from another Red Bull review - I got really hyped up and jittery within 10 minutes for about 20 minutes and then I just felt energized and just a touch less jittery. The effects ended much drama for me because I had just gotten up, but if you were to have this in the afternoon or evening, be ready for a crash.

Scores:
Cost - $5 on eBay, around $14 CDN with shipping
Taste - 9.5/10
Energy - 6/10

Overall - 15.5/20...love grape, love blackcurrants, love this combination!